An encounter with a wild elephant

“Hey! Look, there is an elephant”, said one of the fellow passengers. We were all excited to at least see an elephant, during our safari ride in Nagarhole National Park. The elephant was taking a mud bath (pretty rare sight, huh! – at least I have not seen that before :/ ).

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The driver/guide replied, “It’s a Tusker, Sir!” I knew what a Tusker was (Intelligent me, Yesss! 😛 ) A Tusker is a male elephant with well developed tusks.

The driver parked our open jeep right in front of the Tusker (a distance of about 15 feet, between the Tusker and the jeep). All of us started using our photographic skills, each one of us showing off against the other. The Tusker did entertain us for about 5 minutes, with its mud bath. I was trying my luck as well, to take some good pictures (I had to post them on Facebook, you know!).

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Then something unexpected happened. I had sprang on my seat and was sitting on my friend Akshata’s lap ( 😀 ).

“What Raksha madam? The way you jumped on your seat, was amazing. 😀 Where were you planning to run in this forest?”, asked the driver, laughing out loud (as loud as he could). I gave him a sarcastic laugh and rolling my eyes, sat back on my seat. My legs were still shivering with the adrenaline rush I had experienced.

When I had my senses back, I remembered that a 3 ton elephant had charged us, by running towards the jeep. And it was straight towards me! (“No, I want the best seat – front row, right next to the door”, I had fought with the driver before starting the safari) The driver had started the jeep at the right moment, because of which the Tusker had stopped and headed back to its bush (- where it was enjoying its mud bath before scaring the hell out of me – these animals are such drama, I tell you! 😛 ).

Our jeep stood there, watching the Tusker head back and hid its face behind the bushes (“embarrassed 😀 “, I thought).

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Then the joke was on me (Come on guys! A 3 ton animal running towards you is not a joke), where my dear friend Akshata contributed, along with the driver.

Few more minutes passed by, and this time the Tusker got even more agitated, with us being around. It charged our jeep again. The driver analyzing the seriousness of the situation, acted very quickly and drove our jeep forward. The chase was for good 5 to 10 seconds (Amazing experience, isn’t it? 😀 😀 – my mom thinks it the other way though :/ ).

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Even though I did not see any of the big cats (which was my sole intention of going to Nagarhole), my trip was definitely not less adventurous and memorable. I am glad to have experienced this amazing chase.

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14 Comments

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  4. hi
    Nagerhole National Park is indeed a must-visit in the state of Karnataka. The charging of the tusker must have indeed been a moment of an adrenaline rush, good that you had an experienced driver with you. How was the trails inside the National Park ?

  5. I absolutely love these gentle giants! I would be pretty satisfied with this experience too even though it was set out with the intention to spot some beautiful big cats. Also nothing like seeing these wild beauties in their natural habitat over any zoo or enclosed spaces. Plus for situations like these having a experienced guide/driver is super helpful and maybe even life saving.

  6. Well that was a memorable experience … what no pictures of the elephant charging, or maybe a video of him coming towards you at great speed. I would think he would smile for the camera!! 😉 😉

  7. Subhashish Roy

    The first time I saw an elephant taking a mud bath was in Singapore Zoo. And there the elephants are all trained to perform also in shows at predefined time. The view here of the tusker amongst the beautiful green is amazing. By just seeing the photo I am feeling so refreshed. I can understand how you would have felt during this encounter,

  8. What a fantastic adventure! It was great that you had the opportunity to see the wild elephant. What a beautiful specimen. And it was so close to taking photos! Amazing! It is my dream to see an elephant in a natural environment. Karnataka is on my list. I was in Kerala so far. So maybe I will be lucky one day too.

  9. blair villanueva

    I guess the male elephants needs privacy while he bathes! I mean, nobody wants to be seen naked after all, lol. That is a very funny and memorable story and I’m glad you shared this to us 😀

  10. That’s a memorable experience of seeing an elephant, you both Raksha and Akshata. I don’t even remember when I first saw an elephant. You are lucky to see a wild elephant. Never been to Nagarhole though, it’s in my list.

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